A new survey of small- and medium-sized businesses in the U.S. by the NPD Group — as reported by “AppleInsider” (http://www.appleinsider.com) found that 73% plan to buy tens of thousands of dollars worth of tablets over the next 12 months — and most of them will be iPads.

The NPD Group polled American businesses with fewer than 1,000 employees about their intent to buy tablets over the next year, and found nearly three quarters intend to bring touchscreen tablets into the workplace. Businesses are “determined” to embrace tablets, and the iPad remains the top choice in the enterprise, according to Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis at NPD.

“The iPad, just as it is in the consumer market, is synonymous for ‘tablet’ in the business market, leaving Apple poised to take advantage of the increased spending intentions of these small and medium businesses,” he adds. “NPD’s research shows that iPad purchase preference is higher among larger firms than smaller ones, which is an important indicator that Apple is gaining traction far outside its typical consumer space.”